Embattled federal MP Andrew Laming has been disendorsed by Queensland’s Liberal National Party, paving the way for his departure from politics at the next election.
On Monday night, Dr. Laming faced the LNP’s Application Review Committee after declining to withdraw his nomination for preselection for his safe seat of Bowman, which he has held for 17 years.
“The LNP’s state executive has accepted the ARC’s recommendation that Dr. Laming not proceed as a candidate and has reopened nominations for the seat of Bowman,” a spokesperson told AAP.
Dr. Laming, 54, is under investigation by the electoral commission over more than 30 Facebook pages operated without political authorization disclosures.
He has also been accused of – and has admitted to – harassing two female constituents and was ordered to go on leave and undergo empathy training at the request of Prime Minister Scott Morrison.
And earlier this month, Queensland Police confirmed no action would be taken over another accusation after a woman complained he took an inappropriate photograph of her while bending over.
“Investigators, having considered the interviews and all other information considered as part of the investigation, have determined there is no evidence to indicate a criminal offense,” police said at the time.
However, Dr. Laming intends to rejoin the federal coalition party room when it meets in Canberra and will remain in parliament until the next federal election, which must be held by July 2022.
He had previously announced he would not recontest his seat but had not formally withdrawn his nomination.
Under parliamentary rules, his formal disendorsement makes him eligible to receive a taxpayer-funded “resettlement” payment of six months’ salary, amounting to $105,600.